So…the title says it all, really. I thought I could try to be Superwoman, but apparently that is not in my DNA. I have found my kryptonite. It’s name is university.
I have withdrawn from my #tiegrad studies.
There…I wrote it down in bold letters. That makes it official, right?
I feel like a truck has hit me. I am physically and emotionally broken. I had wanted to better myself. I had wanted to get my Masters degree. I had wanted to do it all while not giving up anything of my real life.
Well, reality is very different.
I gave up a lot.
My family gave up a lot.
I gave up sleep. My brain was racing around in too many different directions because of all the new things I was trying to learn and stuff in there.
I hope now that I will be able to sleep.
I gave up my health. There was no time for exercise. I’m now being treated for tennis elbow and ironically I have never played tennis. The injury comes from too much time on the computer. BTW…after this post I will be taking a blogging hiatus. I will come back to it eventually, but I need to rest my arms and typing with only my left hand is really tricky.
Some day the pain will go away, won’t it?
I gave up time with my friends. I miss my friends dearly, but if I were to do my best at studying, time for fun had to be limited.
I hope they will forgive me.
I gave up time with my family. This one hurts the most. I asked my family to support me and they did in the most loving and selfless ways. I am so sorry that my ambition took me away from them.
I hope they will forgive me.
I hope I can forgive myself.
My wise friend, Carolyn Durley, wrote a post on her blog not too long ago titled “Is busy the boss of you?” and if you haven’t read it yet, please do. This post HAUNTED me. Busy is exactly what was the problem in my life. To quote Carolyn:
Not only is busy a bully but he is a liar too. Some of his lies you may have heard include:
1. Busy is how to make a difference in the world
2. Busy will pay you back one day.
3. Busy excuses you from being present.
4. Busy has a higher purpose.
5. Busy has your best interests at heart.
6. Busy is a sign of toughness.
7. Busy wants to help you be “successful.”
8. Busy is the same as quality work.
9. Busy offers fulfillment.
10. Busy is for important people.
There is far more to my story. I have had a new split grade to teach (stress), chronic back problems that were aggravated by being a student (stress), THREE different principals this year (stress) and so many other things that I just pushed aside as part of attaining my goal.
There is never one thing that brings someone to a monumental decision.
I had many people give me well-meaning advice. “Just push through, you can DO IT!” “I did my Masters, SO CAN YOU!” “It’s short-term pain for long-term GAIN!” Of course I would have loved to stick with it, but you know what? The only person’s advice I should listen to is my own. My brain, heart and body were telling me that this was the wrong decision. I spent five weeks in the fall being more sick than I have ever been before…but I was enjoying my class , so I ignored the signs of burn out. Now my arm hurts so much I can’t even pick up my coffee cup without wincing in pain.
My body is telling me I need a break.
My heart knows it is the right decision.
So, there you have it. Some may call me a failure. Some may call me a quitter. I have called myself those things so many times over the course of my internal struggle to make this decision. But you know what? I am not a failure and I am not a quitter. I have become self-aware enough to know that I can’t do it all, and I can’t expect the people around me to pay for my ambitions and wants. I know that I am a good person, wife, mother, daughter, sister, niece, friend and teacher…WITHOUT the extra letters behind my name.
I will continue to learn. That does not have to be done in a university. My twitter PLN helps me learn every day and for that I thank them deeply.
I am not wealthier in the financial sense (the extra degree would have bumped my pay significantly) but I am RICH in so many other ways that the money doesn’t matter.
I have a wonderful, amazing, loving husband.
I have two incredible, awesome, brilliant sons.
I have incredibly supportive and loving parents, siblings and extended family members.
I have the best and most understanding friends (both real and in the virtual world) that anyone could ask for.
I teach at a fantastic school with great colleagues, kids and their families.
You see, money can’t buy what I have.
I AM BLESSED AND I AM HAPPY!
#tiegrad…I am so sorry I couldn’t make it work. You are an amazing group of people and I am honoured to have been traveling this journey with you. I wish you nothing but the best and can’t wait to celebrate with you when you finish your degrees!
Valerie…thank you for encouraging me, believing in me and teaching me. I will be forever grateful for the faith that you have in me. I will continue to learn from you, even though it is not in a formal university program.